Chocolate Babka


Prior to March this year I had very limited experience with bagels. Sure we have them here, but they taste like a slightly hard but chewy bread roll with a hole in the middle (not a bagel!). I’ve had a real one on a street corner in New York, but that was many moons ago and my food memory of it has long since vanished (boo!). Lucky for me I have been reacquainted with that memory.

For the past couple of months I have been baking up a bagel storm with the very talented Michael Shafran (is there anything this man can’t do?) He is the brains/brawn/boy behind Brooklyn Boy Bagels. If you are not familiar with them, educate yourself now!

A legit Nu-Yawker, Michael so greatly craved the bagels from home that he started to make them himself. Now he has a small army of dedicated bagel believers (including me) who bring the joy of these babies to an appreciative Sydney audience.

If you have never tasted a bagel outside the 5 boroughs, or want to imagine you’re back there, you must get your lips around one of these… stat! Not only will you taste what a real bagel is like but you will also taste all the love, hard work and many hours of hand rolling (I have the RSI to prove it) that goes into each and every one.

Make sure you come in and try some of these awesome bagels, every Sunday from 9am @ Darlie Laundramatic. My top pick, go for the everything bagel with garlic & chive cream cheese and lox (Artisan smoked salmon).

I may not be able to impart you with the top secret bagel recipe, but I can share with you another delicious Jewish bready treat – BABKA! Which I’ll be whipping up for the Sunday pop-ups from mid May.


Alicia X

Chocolate Babka

Yield: 2 x 8-inch loaves

Recipe is adapted from Leah Cooks Kosher


    Yeasted Sweet Dough
  • 60ml warm water
  • 2 packages yeast
  • 125ml milk
  • 115g caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 125g butter, room temperature
  • 675g plain flour
  • Crumb Topping
  • 170g plain flour
  • 115g caster sugar
  • 125g butter
  • Chocolate Babka
  • 1 recipe Yeasted Sweet Dough
  • 1 recipe for Crumb Topping
  • 375g dark chocolate chips
  • 60g caster sugar
  • 60g cocoa
  • 125g butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten


    Yeasted Sweet Dough
  • Dissolve the yeast in the water. Let it rest and bubble for a while.
  • Add the milk, sugar, salt, eggs, butter and half the flour. Mix by hand with a wooden spoon or beat with a hand mixer.
  • Add the remaining flour, a little at a time, to form a soft dough. It shouldn't be sticky but it shouldn't be too stiff.
  • Knead the dough with a dough hook or by hand until very smooth, about 10 minutes.
  • The dough will stretch without tearing when kneaded enough.
  • Grease a bowl, add the dough upside down, and turn to have oiled side up. Cover with a tea towel until double in bulk.
  • Crumb Topping
  • Combine the ingredients in a bowl. Using a hand held mixer, blend the ingredients to form a fine crumb. Set aside until ready to use. Freeze or refrigerate any leftovers for future use.
  • Chocolate Babka
  • Make Yeasted Sweet Dough as directed.
  • Pre-heat oven to 175°C. Put the chocolate and butter into a glass or metal bowl over a pot of simmering water to melt but don't overheat. When the chocolate looks soft, stir until smooth. Add the remaining ingredients and blend into a smooth filling. Turn the heat off but keep the filling over the heat while you roll the dough.
  • Divide the dough in half. Roll each half into a long strip, about 8" wide and 20" long (20x50cm).
  • Slather the filling over both strips into a smooth layer. Roll up the strands to form 2 long, thin rolls.
  • Overlap the strands and keep lifting and crossing to form a twist.
  • Cut the twist in half. Spray 2 x 8 1/2" loaf pans. Lift the loaves into the pans. Brush lightly with egg wash and sprinkle with Crumb Topping.
  • Bake until golden brown, approx. 30-35mins. The loaves should be very golden brown and look baked. Wearing oven mitts, turn a loaf out into your hand. The bottom should look set and the loaf will sound hollow when patted.
  • Cool completely before slicing or the loaf will be gummy


* I highly recommend visiting Leah's site and watching the video on how to make babka, it will help you immensely.

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7 Responses to Chocolate Babka

    • Thanks Rosie! Make sure you roll the dough pretty thin, otherwise you’ll get some really bready bits and the choc spread won’t be evenly distributed :)

  1. any chance you can provide English (American) measurement/temperature conversions?? looks and sounds delish, but i’m having trouble with the conversions. TY.

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